PRISMA®: temperature control and light management to benefit plant productivity and operator well-being. Trials on spinach.
Salads need no longer fear high temperatures, which risk compromising their quality and creating uncomfortable working conditions for operators. Arrigoni, an international leader in the production of technical textiles for agriculture, offers PRISMA®, heat-reflecting screens, rigorously field-tested technological solutions that protect crops and significantly increase productivity. PRISMA®’s high value is demonstrated by trials carried out on spinach, which show, in both qualitative and quantitative terms, the superiority of crops grown under Arrigoni’s heat-reflecting screen compared to other solutions on the market.
Consumption of ready-to-eat salads, which grew exponentially before the health emergency, is not experiencing a crisis. According to data from Nielsen and the Unione Italiana Food IV-ready-to-eat produce , there have only been modest losses and we can therefore expect that, once the pandemic is over, the segment will fully recover and return to its pre-Covid positive trend.
Crops intended for ready-to-eat produce are generally very sensitive to environmental conditions because they need uniform light and heat that is not excessive. Arrigoni’s highly effective solutions improve the general conditions of salad crops, thereby increasing their photosynthetic yield, protecting them from burning and helping to save water.
PRISMA®, temperature control and improved light diffusion
PRISMA® is a range of polyethylene strip textiles with LD-Light Diffusion additive that reflects IR rays, improves the microclimate, reduces temperature and at the same time increases the percentage of diffused light.
“The special LD-Light Diffusion additive formulated by Arrigoni’s laboratory and added to the yarn during production,” comments Giuseppe Netti, agronomist and member of Arrigoni’s R&D team, “increases the percentage of diffused light in the PAR (Photosynthetically Active Radiation) spectrum and reflects more IR (Infrared) radiation, which is responsible for the increase in temperature under cover”.
“Comparative research in the field,” continues Netti, “proves beyond doubt that PRISMA® effectively improves crop conditions compared to other solutions available on the market”.
PRISMA®, the astonishing trials on spinach
An example of PRISMA®’s effectiveness is the trials on spinach. The qualitative results of the comparison between PRISMA® and standard nets available on the market leave no room for doubt: spinach grown under the grey-coloured net had all the most important commercial characteristics at an average level, whereas spinach produced under the black and white cover had elongated, light green leaves without any of the most desirable market characteristics. The spinach grown under PRISMA®, by contrast, had the right shape, a dark green colour and strong blistering. Moreover, the leaves had short stems, which indicates that the plants are growing in good light conditions.
Ultimately, PRISMA® ensures a lower temperature and improves the passage of light in the PAR spectrum. This greatly reduces damage from burning and improves production quality and quantity. Lower temperatures, in addition to allowing more efficient photosynthesis, reduce water requirements by 20-30%.
For more information: https://www.arrigoni.it/